The God of Perspective-Change
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope” (Romans 15:13).
There are many different names of our God in the Bible, but I think this one used in Romans may be my favorite. The “God of Hope.” In other words, in my words, the God of perspective-change.
The Greek word for “hope” used in the New Testament is “elpo,” directly meaning, “to look forward with pleasurable confidence and expectation.” It is notable that the direct translation of the word “hope” in Greek has to do with our eyes, our vision, the direction that we look. Our eyes govern our perspective, and God governs our eyes — which is why I like to think of our God as a God of perspective-change.
I cannot help but read the daily news with a prickling feeling of pessimism, and I am sure some of you feel the same. How could we have gotten to this point? Crime, polarization, comparison, hate, sin. Article after article, filled with despair and sorrow. It is tempting to let these feelings swallow us whole — and that is what a number of Americans do.
What we as Christians need to remember is that even in the thick of the chaos, especially in the thick of the chaos, we serve the God of hope.
The circumstances of the world don’t change the fact that our God is the God of hope — that is His name. He is hope. When our trust is in God, we don’t need to yield to despair in our lives, because our hope lies in something greater than life itself. It doesn’t matter if everything around us is crashing down, it doesn’t matter if our news intake is progressively growing cynical — we can abound in hope by clinging to the God of hope. He fills us with joy and peace, all we must do is simply believe in Him.
In believing, all of His promises in scripture become a reality.
In believing, we know that we are guaranteed eternity with the Father. In believing, we know that everything in this life is fleeting. In believing, we know that nothing can pluck us out of our Father’s hand. In believing, we know that we are on a mission while we’re here on earth. In believing, we know that He will guide us and lead us where He wants to. In believing, we know that we possess the joy of the Lord and a peace that surpasses all understanding. In believing, we know that earth is just a pit stop in our journey to the everlasting. In believing, we know that we are the object of affection in the greatest love story of all time.
Today, even in a world where darkness seems to prevail, we must choose to believe in the God of hope, the God of perspective-change. With that simple, unconditional belief, He promises us joy, peace, and hope, despite our surroundings.